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The Link Between Haemorrhoids And Horseshoes

Jan 10, 2008
Car hire has a long and quite diverse history.

Even before the invention of motor vehicles, people were able to hire a horse and carriage for a length of time, at an agreed price with the owner, for transport, holidays or business.

This became such big business that Saint Eligius was given the patronage over everything to do with horses and carriages from horses, horseshoe makers and saddle makers to carriage makers, cartwrights and wheelwrights.

St Eligius was an extremely skillfull metalsmith in his day. Hence, his patronage to smiths. This led to his patronage of all things horsey and was compounded by the fact that he left a horse to a priest at his own predicted death.

Around the same time as St Eligius was making a name for himself in Belgium, St Fiacre was doing the same across the border in France. Seeking solitude but never gaining it because of his skill with healing herbs, St Fiacre fled to France from his native Ireland.

Many years after the death of St Fiacre, The Hotel de Saint Fiacre was established in Paris. The hotel was a well known place for hiring out carriages, an early form of car hire. However, not many people were aware who Fiacre was by this time and referred to the hired carriages as Fiacre cabs.

This later led to St Fiacre becoming the patron saint of cab and taxi drivers. He is also the patron saint of haemorrhoids - possibly due to too much sitting around by cab drivers?

Retreating in history even further than St Eligius and St Fiacre, lived St Christopher. St Christopher was a pious man who wandered the world seeking out novelty and adventure. One day, he happened upon a hermit who lived by a stream and guided people safely across it.

In exchange for instruction in the truth of God, Christopher took the hermit's place and carried people safely across the stream. Legend has it that St Christopher once carried a small child across the stream who turned out to be Christ himself. He was then baptised by this child with water from the stream.

Thanks to this service that St Christopher carried out, he later bacame patron saint of things related to travel and travellers. His official patronage covers a multitude of things including automobile drivers, motorists and travellers.

There was an natural explosion of the car hire business with the invention of the automobile and many vehicles were built for hire including coaches, buses and taxi cabs. Huge lorries were also made available for sale or hire for the distribution of goods.

St Christopher is also the patron saint of bus drivers, cab drivers and lorry drivers which is why many of them carry an effigy of him for safeguarding them on their travels.

Of course, car hire has come a long way from horses and carriages but is more important now than ever. The whole world relies on transportation to keep them supplied in food and goods of all kinds and to keep the world's economy running.

That all filters down to Mr and Mrs Average using car hire as their preferred method of transport when it comes to their two week holiday in Cornwall.
About the Author
Expert historian Catherine Harvey looks at the patron saints ofcar hire and all travel related issues. To find out more please visit http://www.budget.co.uk/
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